THE LAST OF THE OLD-WORLD MOB BOSSES AND THE ULTIMATE BETRAYAL-For more than twenty years, Joseph "Big Joey" Massino ran what was called the largest criminal network in the U.S., employing over two hundred and fifty made men and untold numbers of associates. The Bonanno family was responsible for over thirty murders, even killing a dozen of its own members to enforce discipline and settle scores. He would be brought down by Salvatore "Good Looking Sal" Vitale, the underboss who was not only Massino's closest and most trusted friend, but also his brother-in-law. In the end, facing the death penalty and the prospect of leaving his family penniless, Massino started talking to the FBI--the first Mafia Godfather to break the sacred code of omerta, and the end of a centuries-old tradition. THE KING OF THE GODFATHERS: Big Joey Massino and the Fall of the Bonanno Crime Family-Anthony M. DeStefano.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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Oh baby. You are now listening to true murder, the most shocking killers in true crime, history and the authors that have written about him. Gacy Bundy, Dahmer, night, stalker, BT came every week. Another fascinating offer talking about the most shocking, an infamous killer, who crime history through murder. With your host journalist, Ann Arbor, Dan, asking. Good evening. This is your host Dan is for the program to true murder. The most shocking killers in true crime, history and the authors that have written about them last of the old world, mob bosses and the ultimate betrayal
for more than twenty years Joseph steeped in luxury, driven by innovation. It's how we do business had Genesis of Willow Grove. It's our mantra, the phrase we can't help but RP it's our promise that Genesis of Willow Grove will serve every customer as exquisitely as Genesis does steeped in luxury, driven by innovation, its genesis of Willow graph on Eastern Road and Willow Grove and online, at Genesis of Willow, Grove, dotcom hurry and for an offer as exceptional as our vehicles. Big Joey GINO read what was called the largest criminal network in the. U S, employee. Over two hundred and fifty made men and and old numbers of associates, the butter no family was responsible over thirty murders, even killing a dozen of its own members to enforce discipline and settle scores. Joey Massino woo be brought down by Salvatore good looking Salver tally, the other
plus, who is not only casinos closest and most trusted friend, but also brother in law. In the end facing the death penalty in the prospect, the leaving his family penniless casinos started talking to the FBI, the first, the godfather, to break the sacred code of Amerika, the end of the centuries old tradition, the king of the fathers, with my special as journalists than author Anthony De Stefano with king of the godfathers, my special guest. Thank you for agreeing to this interview and welcome to the program Anthony these to follow. Thank you very much for having me it's a pleasure. Thank you very much renders this program so first thing this is an incredible book covering incredible amount of mafia and mob and la la Cosa Nostra history. What is background as a journalist, which obviously has prepared,
need to be able to write a book of this magnitude, but also, what is your professional journalistic background that would uh able you to be able to write this book well The journalist for over thirty some odd years, an I started in as a cub reporter in New York City for Fairchild NEWS Service, which was really the provider stuff for women's were daily in other fields. Publications that one by candy ass. By the way I got into the situation where we were women for Daily approached us to write a story about the mob on Seventh Ave in the garment district in New York City, and I had really no experience and exposure to the mob at that time. This is in the 70s and we plunged into the project- and this is way before the internet way before computers way before blah or anything else and how to go about digging the stories out of the newspaper archives. Looking micro fails, a micro fishes
burning up shoe leather, going around town talking to cops detectives and people in the garment district, and we put together the series of stories about because in Austra and its influence in the garment industry, which is pretty significant in New York, crime, history right from the 1930s on and all that find families were involved. And, of course, we came across the crime families most significant being began. Be knows that the time for many years the Lucchese he's with Tommy Lucchese running addressed business trucking companies, allegedly in these cartel arrangements. And then we had the bananas we were kind of in there in various ways, either through ownership of dress houses, factories, trucking companies, loan sharking, you know whatever and basic. We did a series of about ten stories and I
got me into the sort of institutional history of a mafia in New York City, I mean we say: mafia they're, going to change a little cousin australo. I know purists will say that goes a note. The american version, mafia, is more of the italian sicilian version about me and when I gonna quit and I got into it- and you know we did the story and we quite a at the time and I stayed with and gradually again my next job with the Wall Street Journal and I d right. I figured at that point. I'm not going to be covering the mob anymore, I'll, be doing something a little more high in the sites. Well, no sooner then I get to the Wall Street Journal in the in nineteen uh. These then Geraldine Ferraro became vice presidential candidate and questions were raised about families, background and real estate holdings in lower Manhattan, and I got us into some care
those who were old, mob characters of the time. Mostly What game you know: crime, family. There wasn't any connection between her and her family with the crime families, but it was really just sort of real estate interest that really struck our attention. We different stories at the Wall Street Journal about that. I then got into Newsday, We had a long history of doing mob exposes a mob stories. Mostly through the works of the Tom Runner and green legendary guys in their own right, and I got hired on right about the time that MOB Commission case was getting New York City is brought in to dig into those story, and I wasn't right back into the mob again and we have again been: oh, cried families Genovese, you had everybody back again, you dating back into the old territory, and I thought I stayed with that
and gradually you in the newspaper business, you do all sorts of stuff. I sort of specialized an immigration legal affairs for SAM, I'm a lawyer by training with another practice, and I was doing all sorts of things for the paper as you do. You know as a newspaperman and gradually in early two thousand two thousand and two I started covering the Brooklyn Federal, for we are really very active cord with mob cases, and that is where they prosecuted out their indicted. The bizarre the banana crime family. So because my bailiwick, I picked up the case, and I had a right about the indictment someone I indictments was, of course, of joint HU. I didn't really now at a time, but I did get to know quite a lot about and join us
in our case turned out to be a big case. Frankly, I gotta tell you, I didn't want to do the case fragile boy by it of agriculture to white guys from queens at that exciting, It turned out to be in another, only pretty significant, but was the thing that sort of like this book and that is the sort of it. Not show how I got into it, but he has allowed miles in their lot of lot of time. Spent putting together files, before the internet, so we had to go out and actually did through filed rummaged save paper, and I don't mind the file cabin in my house filled with all sort of musty weathered yellowed pieces of paper, because that's what I used to do things by paying you say paper, the pull paper you make hundreds
even under the old xerox and type system, and some of them such as now face but then gradually the internet came about no other and we're starting to do the banana crime, family and stuff in the 90s. You know you're getting more of a computerization so making the job a little easier, but took us six months to do in the 1970s. You could probably do competent in about a month now now, two weeks, if you really want to use the hack job, if you really wanted to get into the institutional history, you gotta know the history. And that's what a lot of that old spade work does give you that background and a lot of reporters today. If you look for a quick date, quick hit are not going to get that. So that's one of the things that you lose when you don't do it the old way, but make no mistake about it.
You know, but I kind of guy who doesn't like the computers. I think they're very necessary good for what we do and very helpful. It made writing this book much more easier than it would have been in a twenty years ago. Absolutely. How long did it take you to write this particular book by the way If I would be the authors I this particular book, because I covered the trial, joy, Messina and a heavy the thread we're algae in my head, and I knew where all the documents were new Woody people were done some interviews earlier. It took me from about the time I really started sitting down to do it. It took about six to seven months The researching and writing now had, I start to do with fresh. Had I not covered the case
trial. It would have taken probably bout a year because I would have been swimming through the chronology. You know it's kind of rough because. If you don't, if you don't experience the trial know if you don't get a flavor for the characters, that's something. But to any need to have by covering a trial. That's what gives you sergeant for that. I gotta read rhythm dry transcript, you're losing a lot sure, but I was in court for some of these things and I could relate to much more deeply. You know what I was reading. I can we then things that I was sitting at the time, but you're not gonna, get from the transcript so important, sometimes to attend these trials. You can wait a transcript, but that essential, but another time try. But I really gives you a lot more balance. Maura nuance story yeah, I think so absolutely
you have gone through the whole chronologique chronic logical order of the La Cosa Nostra the Mafia American MA, as we know it here, and at least in some of these families here- and he talked about the commission- we're talking about the sixties, you go back to two monster name a mega dino and where we find Joseph Bonanno and and some other people that are also in the commission, look easy and also can be so, maybe without me going into any names it all. Please explain. What's going on gold, you take us back, like you, do in the book to the Middle EAST and the Doha round of Joseph Bonobo and give us that whole or give us some of the characters in this interest story where we start in, I will start with Bonanno, because banana was really on the scene by the nineteen thirty's
and this is part of that period were lucky Luciano set up. The commission's kind of the overriding body and soul had defied family structure in mind, and pretty soon thereafter, Bonanno took where the one faction fraction is really one of the families banana persisted for a long time as a boss after the forties into the 50s and then by you know by the 1960s things, to order to go crazy, he was sort of megalomania scraps angering the other mob bosses and he wasn't building bridges with doing things tat they did not like, and I think one of them was pudding one of his sons or suggesting that one of his sons actually
take over the family they didn't cut today- so ultimately, this whole thing with banana have disappeared. We were supposedly abducted on this matter, some New York in the 60s. He writes in his biography, and why was the faction a relative from Buffalo the Buffalo area, Upstate New York that arranged the city was taken from farm out and update New York? Ok, I tend to think that that's probably not so that might be a cover story. I think the more likely explanation was that he arranges on stages on abduction got taken away and went away someplace to get out of the heat get away, and perhaps a boy
perhaps an assassination, but I think if the mob took him is: is crime family? If somebody else, I think there would have been much more. Much more untimely demise sure of that came back. I think it was about two years later, an reappeared in Manhattan and went to federal court from charges and from there it was history was kind of got. The family was kind of neutralized at that point, because their leadership was in disarray. He was not getting this poor from the commission in his absence. Other people were in the family and gradually, when he retired out to California and up to California, to Arizona? You know there was a series of acting bosses and committee. That sort ran a family and is into the 70s, and things were starting to. It was in flood.
In a state of flux for good number years, until Phil Stelly Cannon serve himself and got power, but that's what are the short of notes, sort of version of this and between all sorts of yellow palace brought over one arm. They pervade the story of the last godfather, because the banana family was one where the politics were very unstable for long period of time. Cluding intimacy nose, ear, and you know that in fact set up one of the great sort of murders in the story: the murders of the three captains in nineteen eighty, one Brooklyn, which was workin on omega sort of power, struggle that ended very barely three captains. Dominic concur
your phone funny, reddened dolicho, something's GINO played a role in setting up, and that was one of the units in the book is described in a lot of detail. The lowering of the three cap as to the house, the Social Club in Brooklyn. Rather then, the sort of fur signal running the hand through the hair, guys coming out of the closet song with guns and killing switch, took place a rather fashion and in the club club was actually a building once clubhouse Sammy sort of interrelationships relationships. The banana again Venus, mainly because of Messina, had a lot of sort of interplay. They had a lot of friendly relationships and right use each other. Now and again when they had to uh.
I mean you know I could go on. I mean the politics of the family in the 80s. Also in the late. My and light 1970s was tumultuously calming the lengthy, really asserting itself, More specifically was in jail was telling went to jail more than he was and that create instability, because you don't kid from the true boss, easy chain of command and easy communicate and we're still is in jail so often that we had to rely on the street millions China, being one of them, to carry orders and carry business, carry on business in that period, Glenda you got out of jail, himself and one of the great things mosquitoes assignment of witnessing last week or so described. How go any day now became the boys in this period,
up until the time he was killed in nineteen, seventy nine and July again in another sort of coup, arrange virus belly, wanna get him out of the way it has a lot of it in fighting going on in the bud. How could we stelly manage because as many mobsters in this book that you even talk about- and you know people assume that there's no way of actually being a to retire, but a couple of these guys are forced to retire. Now, Howdahs was stelly from prison through the family window DE. I think cities got this Palermo connection these at the sicilian stamp of approval here, so tell us how Restyle Egon keep Primus areas here through emissaries to guide like mosquito and other relatives who are carrying messages in the meantime,
less than a guy who engendered loyalty- and it was fear- but he didn't mention the loyalty and restoring was ever pulled together. And Was it I remember the newspaper headlines and when I was going through the material to do the book. I came across the original UPI, yellow teletype paper with the dispatch that and it was dead and I've saved it all those years and he was able to pull it off. I mean he was able to get everybody together and I think some of the civilians went along with it. You know himself by the way the tests by the other. That he didn't really have a hand in the actual killing him talente. He wasn't there on the scene. He was he was outside. He wanted, Even outside now you eat is this. Testimony varies from a lot
the traditional stories in some ways, some roadmap material, but some of its interesting Josie the world in his own way. I'll? Tell you the face value that look. If I said I wasn't, there was an driving a car so What are you gonna do but he restored with. I will pull this off one thing out of the way. Didn't solve problems within the family took care of one, but then you know you got problems with the three captains. This is in no, the early 1980s creating another power struggle. Why? Why did the? Why did the three captains believe that why why were they were the interest in doing what they? Why? How did their borders come about? It here is that they wanted to gain significant control and, with a couple of them, seemed to be into drug dealing with that claim
and they were arming themselves, and this word got back to Masino in his people when they thought that they were going to be not off, so they made a pre emptive strike one after them and got into the club and the guys have a you know the peace conference for a discussion about the dispute sort of solve things. So I thought things alright, you know they they slaughter them, and then they use the Gambino crime. Family, John Gotti's crew, out of a ozone park to dispose of the bodies in a lot in ozone park in queens and another interesting thing Masino testify. Who was that the bodies planted in a lot to be found by this claim? He said one to a very, very deep and one way
very true near the top, and he said that was done to show the message from the committee: if anybody tries these kinds of a Damn Power plays that this is what can happen to them. The true I don't have the final word for it. So these one body, dont, Alfonse, funny, read his body- was found by some kids playing a lot. And they dug up- and that was funny red I didn't find the other two until about one thousand three hundred and fourteen years later, just to dig deep enough, Right- gotta use tobacco, the backhoe to plant them, yeah yeah, you know one of the more most fascinating things are more fascinating things in your book for a lot of peop but to have watched movies,
dial end at are familiar with the daddy Rascal story may begin. I explained the two camps: urgency of these two characters, Joseph up, the stone if I'm pronounced in his right. Yet we will. We know in the movies that daddy brass goers, undercover name is daddy. Roscoe, explain how he Howie incredibly infiltrates the mob and then how he's connected with the banana fan. My and guarantee and credibly Howie's intertwined in this story, and I'm sure most people don't know any about this to explain that Donnie Rascal Rapscallion Joseph is down in a well one of the first, if not the first FBI do a long term. Undercover penetration the mob, and he did that in Brooklyn and the city in the banking sector. And and into the early 80s
that by you know, ingratiating himself with the crew of of funny black Napoletano right and he got very heavily connected. Now. He didn't have a lot of connection to Masino the. Do you know what we hear was weary of him. I was sure of it. He had seen and seated know enough about him, but funny black, no through is underlings, got like the stone and the stone Of course, with the FBI undercover Asian and he was in deep penetration gathering evidence. Gathering gossip, which family evidence from huddle leads, which come on. We will lead to the indictment of people around the politicians. I around apologise because something
very strange happened: In the early 1980s, I don't have the exact date, but it had to have been after well, not long after the three captains FBI, knowing that. They wanted to make Joseph response remember the mob, but also implies that maybe things are getting the pressing there Can somebody may be actually getting onto the stone retold the storm, the undercover operation. And a bunch of FBI agents then went to sunny blacks, Club Greenpoint, wins Bulgaria Brooklyn and they went up to him in his club to the apartment. Actually above the club, they said, look or FBI agents and they showed him a picture of funny Roscoe surrounded by other FBI agents.
And if I were, you might let you know, and the paraphrasing, the guy you thought was. Sunday Rascals an FBI agent. We don't want anything happening I think they made an overture to Sonny Black at that time to say look now if you want to help us we're here for you, but he didn't bite and I was an old diehard monster. That way. You know the jig was up the guy you trusted for all these years was an FBI agent, nothing I'm told them You knew its document, not gonna, be good. Ending sure So he, though, a classic picture and have it in the book of stone going up to the roof lovers club, where he kept rating racing pigeons. And sort of in a meditative state just surrounded by pigeons. Probably the only true friends are going to have in the world that that yeah, you know and
is the FBI was surveilling. This whole thing they said reality agents talking to him. This availed Sonny Black on the street with his buddies. You know with looks of amazement and concern, and that is one picture of sunny black on the roof was pigeons. And then not long after that, Sonny Black disappears now the conventional story. And I say conventional so unclear that must see no and other the crime family wanted him out of the way. Because of that, the sea. No money testified. Indicated that wasn't true, But then he never said he wanted to give Sonny blanket or receipt, which is code word for death, but suffice to say, Sonny Black gets murdered on Staten Island and it
get buried and a few years later you know he had sat turns up when somebody find some, I think, was in the woods Staten Island black situation. He stayed alive, he would have gotten indicted birthday, add in a whole bunch of people for a bunch of crimes out of the banana crime, family among them with three captain murders right and there was a whole series of convictions. Funny black, of course, is dead. He was never rested. Messina was on the Lamb yeah word. He said said from the ice. What happened to the general? He was also the guy that vouched for yeah, I think we've got is I recall he got convicted and, I think, spent some time in jail. He is now dead has been dead for a few years. He died in prison, or was he killed, now. I think you ve got freed up.
I think he died out of prison and a whole bunch of people were convicted or various aspects of the case. But it's like a John one of these jump cases where some people got acquitted. Some people got convicted. Some people got certain things and acquitted of others. It was the first Donnie Brass, go use of evidence in this case. How did he? How did he, though? How did he really convince them later? I don't know if I still understand exactly how he could infiltrate this gang on any on any level whatsoever despite and never mind the level that he did he I too, how did he really do that, but I think he did it by long term penetration not pushing it. You know just getting getting that confidence by able to
suppose we dispose of stolen property, you wanna red disposing in the criminal network. The FBI was taking it and then we are providing you with money. These guys are. They were loaded with security about him and that's what happened? I know he he got a vouched by being able to produce for them. Plus you had a good line of patter. You know and things that I had to been very tough. I think if you read the stones on books, you know and showed you how tough it was. He was separated from his own family and the stress of the undercover operations is really incredible Sure, but when you get to know these guys my lot of psychological dimension to lose out in our union, you know it's almost like a stock home syndrome where you get to identify what these guys in some ways. So I thank MR, did, but I should have been he's got arrested. Somebody got killed,
yeah, it's very, very strange world to be stepping into and then having to get out of that others have done it. You know, others have done it before. Then this check Kersey, who did a recently with the game Those like any about your mother infiltrators in the last few years have done that. But you know it's tough. And is always a chance: this may not work. I mean workout to your advantage: cattle Harriet Times ship. Now this the signal. He gets the order to kill it'll Borelli and how that either was in his early days, Joe yeah yeah veto blowing yeah really so I would. It was interesting to us they how you talk about how this a character in the book named deal.
His specialty was dismemberments and he got excited at the prospect of doing it. I mean I think a lot of people are in Reno May I point out that the area yeah and supposedly he was the guy who was supposedly involves. This was again another game. You know Bonanno operation. The Messina testified that about a recently the current case. It found trop about how can report this plan was very angry. Peter Borelli prevent gaining his daughter. My really demanded an apparently veto. Borelli met the cardinal sin of comparing Forecast Atlanta, Frank Perdue of Chicken same YO. I mean whatever resemblance by the comical. Nobody would fuel
of sane mind, you would have just laughed it off, but sure test Lana took it as an insult, apparently an he may have done other things too. 'cause. You don't really know the whole story. I find a little hard to believe that would have set a more, but that's it that's what we're hearing in any case the contract, one doubt out to God these people, and you know what that point. I'm not sure exactly in the chronology may have been made about the maid machine. At that point, But in any case, Meta Brayley shot dead in some behind some cookie warehouse. Got his people to care dispose of the body. There was a grim events by sir. The mayor was involved you
I can only imagine what would have happened to it proceeded to other trial. Testimony shoddy was the dismemberment gonna guy knowledge. What we haven't talked about is really how Joseph Bonanno is related to sell the Collie remainder Fino Messina for me as related Salvatore, and am we give us a little bit of the the even the appearance these guys it expedient splay, like cell, has limits, which is handsome, sow, Linlithgow good looking so so, but about their relationship and how the hell they know each other measures remain, but actually sell was little younger. The mad I was older and
Joe is dating, were seen fell. Sister Jos thing would raise, fell a sort of liquor. Now she was in the system was close. Sound family, though, is Joe got to know south or Josephine, and yes, that was a young guy looked up to Joe and they became friends Joe taught him how to swim- and you know Joe was uh from a lifeguard in his youth and and I was sort of a knocker, I'm kind of Guy Joe, was and found him over the years you know became friendly close, I suppose Joe ultimately married Josephine and Sal became shows broad by that relationship, and you know this is you know. Ultimately it turns out to be bad for you, but he confided in so I had to
love and crimes and attention. I must say, because a lot of people were unhappy with the way Sal was in terms of relationships, others in the crime family. He became under bore a lot of people, thought one worthy that title or job he didn't. I had a handle on and care for him captains and a lot of them. A lot of people resented sound, which also have kept him around. Some people thought sound was an informant cooperated secretly, but you know why is that at that point? Well it just things. You know it's just. I think it is in the mob if you don't like somebody, if you want to neutralize spreading rumors that he's an informant ok, so I think this was what was going on, but there's no evidence at that time that he was maybe in the coming
women are cooperating to really two thousand three but Joe said that I knew the problems they with their we're having with sound and was really sort of neutralizing him a sort of an admission that he was growing up, he took didn't get it any captains after and can kept and put them on a short leash, emasculated Sal and that created resentment with Sal. You know over the years really came to a head. They all got arrested south of what do I have to put up with this guy for and protect him and look did to me way. My captains, when I got arrested earlier, he can't nobody taken my family screw him merely sort are pushed out over the edge, and that was a significant below the Messina later on
right. There are one point to a close, but the attention you know probably Joe wasn't married to Josephine and Josephine. New Sal yeah might not have made him in a position of power, and it was. I must have psychological dimension that we don't quite understand here, but Joe. There Truman caps now around so openly terms. Cause it entreats outright and maybe Selden deserve it, but that was part of machinery. I'm doing at that point now well setting what rackets were were we're cell was so involved in what rackets were were Joe more but they never found. Look. I took important murders together. Testimony showed that Sal admitted it, Extortions there was gambling
long shocking. They were all involved to varying degrees. But enough that the FAO has here this problem with the law when he got arrested and the murders, of course, being the most serious thing now we ve skipped over a little bit. It was a lot of FBI surveillance on on the mission and for about four years of a lot of luck in this while for years it was numerous conversations taped. Now. How did exactly gets how the hell yeah well sound, humming sound, wasn't cell wasn't snared. Will the commission any commission or other related wiretaps bugs add a bug in twenty two Llanos Palmer Boy, social club
This time there were various. Why attempts on he's crew, Angela Missouri, was too talkative and they bugged his house and they among the funds. And there are a lot of tapes that came out in the 1980s, but Sal was arrested with Joe In early January, two thousand and three. January, ninth, two thousand and three: they form a single birthday and so ass, a serious problem, in this cases, because before sound joy arrested, a number of Bonanno captains had been arrested and flipped, and this is a case that was put to. By two very good FBI agents were accountants and elsewhere. I did a forensic accounting thing, They track certain monies from the scene out to certain people and they made
cases against low level. People pressure them to cooperate with the domino effect domino sort of collapse and presents. Am I right captains will cooperating as Messina and against AL and they knew a lot of bad stuff. They knew a lot about murders. I thought about extortions and other things so Sal new of the evidence and knew who was arrayed against them terms of Co. Op operators? He decided look now. Why do I have to hold out you know for gel? You know I don't care about Joe any. Changed and forget about America forget about loyalty, nobody, Get me emasculated me I'm turning and he turned and he was like a capstone dedication Joe the signature so intimately worked on borders with him.
Rarely case being one of the main one and others to which some of which sounded himself So you know that's the way it went so monsieur it was just more valuable than Vitali, even though they were both involved in murders and it even though there was already other people were right. You know what the high and target do you know what the boy the Taliban and the boys really really had no portfolio at that point here is really kind of out of the power structure in a way he was not look palm favourably. He really didn't have much clout in the family Messina, the boss, with a guy who had been untouchable? Not really untouchable, depicted in the eightys was a guy who built the banana family. Up to a position of power. After the debacle with I would just at this time evaluation
some cloud again and he was was a factor he made the family a factor and Joe became tremendously wealthy from his crime activities and saw the legitimate activities to but Joe with try and target that was the boss. That was the main man, so yeah, but but Allie was buildings. Building block no have capstone. I called him to the case against Massino, who I had to get now. How did they proceed with with cell in these other guys, turn coating on on these Masino and some other people? So how does the prosecution and the authorities prepare for this trial and prepare for this kind of testimony against these mobsters. It's not an easy trial and not a surefire thing. You're going to get convictions either. So no it wasn't what they had to do. Is they have extensive debriefings of sale on all the other. Cooperate is frank, Koper,
frankly, no and the others and was your catarrhal name another one and use them sort of into we'd their testimony so that it supports each other or amplifies, like certain people knew about certain homicides. Others didn't. For certain people knew about some aspects of homicides, which would dovetail with other pieces. The tally knew was present at three captains. Murders say was the verify turn things Lena was able to where I was not present at the three cap as murders, but he couldn't died. He was potential target, but he came in with regard to European killed, but he ran out the back door somebody's got to lock it arrived when he flipped he was able to give his version of events sure the other side, but he
This version of events and adaptable Vitaly was telling people and what other people testified about what the forensic evidence showed. So they put together like a quilt- and you know they they stitched it altogether and after extensive debriefings and a lot of photographic evidence a lot of photographs going back in the 70s they used, they were able to build a very strong case against Joe a girl, never reverse avail. Conscious not on any tape, but he wasn't early tapes in the eightys which were used for some of them right, but in the nineties, do thou two thousand on photos of job. Some photos of Joe Video there's no tapes of Joe, you know so you had to build a case with witnesses. That's why it is witness of these turncoats was so important. Now, how does what's the demeanor
of Joe Messina through this thing and and also how the prosecution fair in the preparation of their witnesses, who say they they had the stitches? story together. Obviously it sounds like they were. A pretty good job tell her how how the prosecution fared in the inn in the proceedings I think they fared very well early on throughout The witness, like, I said, back each other stories up. The impact of the physical evidence. They were really wasn't much for Joe to do to combat this stuff, and I think he saw early on at this case, going south for him and he's gonna get convicted. Sorry come up with an idea very early on in the case that he was going to Come as always witnesses he got through an not to convicted and he becomes zone. The government uncle operator, the first official boy and your cousin usher to turn
momentous event. That was, we became aware of that in two thousand and five he actually was doing it within me. So this conviction in two thousand and four or ten minutes he went in to try to see the judge. So let me put together very strong case. He saw it was drawn. So what's my trump card here, my trunk where's the cooperate myself, everybody else cooperating. Its members will do something then ass. She testified many bessie and those cases less two weeks. The last week in ice luck, I wanna to get some save my family something and make a deal with the government. Because he had a forfeit, it'll, lot of property, sure one million dollars in real estate in cash and gold bars, but he made a deal and kept some rental properties for his wife, so she at least have the income that would have been just for one Kay. I can't do that anymore.
So either in the. When was the last time that he testified data and written many Batsy AUS current racketeering trial, going on in Brooklyn federal court. It's a death penalty case, then was chosen. Loyal captain love them. I would do anything for him by his own. Mission and he's on trial for murder, a family eligible and Joe was the sort of star witness We ve never seen this before about outpacing machine will understand after that, all that time and writing a book actually track. My book pretty closely. When throughout history, if you wrinkles along the way he has suffered, he conflicted with other witnesses on nothing terribly important for bananas case, but just interesting stuff about the That is one thing that came to mind.
Carefully for the moment, but there were two or three things varied from what the previous evidence and then Interesting for anybody who follows this, but nothing terribly important. I guess you sorry, I guess you have every. I guess you make. Every attempt will be there accurate with these stories. Yeah yeah you trying to be because you know this is you're getting relating history and recorded so complete. Now that is no reason to you. Let me hear you look at the court records. You talk to people, you get a photos, You use your own files and stuff and try to sort of silver. You try to me, you have to be really wanna, be accurate, because you want to portray things accurately they are legally. I think they have an obligation to do that. What are the sum of the babies are disturbed,
most profound conclusion that you got to this. Maybe even the most surprising thing that you got out of this or again, maybe just the most profound thing that you got out of doing this entire project. Guy disguising added looking at long term. It seems that, in from the old mafia code of silence, of course, is dead. Sure there isn't really that much loyalty among these guys anymore either. And that is the interesting thing about machine and we had a lot of power, but he was a cold for the ruthless guy. The impression I have on the stand by the way when it justifies relief, immoral cold and he didn't agenda that did not engender loyalty. Fear, yes, but not loyalty and collapsed should be at the top issue mean embryos could be, but
going got rough with people they're going to say I'm going to save my. I don't know you anything. That's great think I noticed about this. Machine did not engender loyalty, the old, what is probably would have a care that people better interesting and What was your conclusion after this trial as well? In terms of what you had seen, he said you were still witnessing Masilo justifying against other mobsters ratifies the main ratifies. My feeling that in all these guises, just because somebody once said it just a group of criminals with the goal of making money and that's not a basis for loyalty. I've made a lot of money and, in the end he didn't pull loyalties. People went for his own self advantage.
This is the conclusion I come to that's really the sort of weakness now and the mob structure I don't think it's really going to recover from that. You know the thing is one of the things because uh primarily do stories about murders and that ends up being serial killers and it's obviously a different mindset, but I think through the sort of glamorization to a certain degree, the Hollywood Hollywood ization of these stories we certainly have this sort of affection for some of them- and you know, there's obviously some movies but fair amount of humor in there as well, but there's nothing fun think about these guys, except maybe their oddness and their cycle pathic personalities These guys are some of the most cold blooded killers ever they were killed for some time. Trivial reasons, and they kill for business. There is a wide range of notice play some in between
two poles and you know it's about money. We re naked kind of capitalist mentality, unfair, but you know unregulated, you know it's if you can survive and survival finished here, that's what that's, how they keep score How much you get at the end now a lot of these guys don't make a lot of money Joe made tons of it. And he was well german businessman, so he had his restaurant businesses and catering businesses. He had some legit. You know had ahead watching. I understand he had tremendous recall of facts and dates, and he had ahead and numbers to is very good at using numbers and doing math in a business sense. But a lot of these guys don't make it that way. Aren't really that smart,
don't really put together the Kellers knucklehead the survive, maybe they don't, but Job Joe was able to survive until having the times change. Everything collapsed around him. There's no loyalty right! That's the key here! While you know it's a great looking at the godfather some, it's incredible read for people who are listening to program so far. Also on it talk about. You had mentioned a new project. If you're talking about that you're working on right now, that's either set the come out, maybe give us the details of mob killer. Killers coming in June. It's story of Charlie chronically bodies. Crew in the Gambino crime. Family, core Negley was another case I covered in two thousand and nine again in Brooklyn federal court.
He was really one of the last people of the old Gotti crew at around part and he got convicted of playing roles and form orders Anita repression, murder scene. I would. You know the order hit play a role, women and Charlie. I was involved from the evidence in this case the evident show that he was involved and am, I think, people shooting them. You know more personal direct. What I like it was like to be fitted to pilot from me thousand feet down there with them with the wood the skin he was, he was doing it better. The evidence showed in the case and he got convicted and yet sentence to life, and that's the way it's going to be with Charlie the redeeming factor about Charlie.
You want to call it. That is that he was very loyal and caring to his mom, the very elderly. And she died data with ninety six and back again: timber and Heyward take care of her, and do you get everything for an a lot of people like that about him?. But now he had, you can call a psychopathic streak and he was really one of the last of the old dinosaurs. You know it goes. The mob collapsed around him and he was out on the street until he got arrested and he lamented it's not like the old days anymore, and I had nothing to do. And guy that were coming up, And it was his friends
its own tragic story in a way, but you know you can't forget the fact that he was involved in and charged with her of tourism merits it's an interesting story. It's really is sorry about the waning days of the gaudy, he is kind of like the last vestige of that time period it got. His son is involved in some of the story, because the evident showed the DEN Charley was junior screw for time anyway, Junior himself one or two for Miss trials and got out of the life. I've got out the life, but you know Try some of the same arguments Julia had had it wasn't part of the mob. Anyone can work for him. They would like low level guy.
Junior able to survive and the boy had a prison one is trying to do that. It's probably a matter of how much you paid for your lawyer's wealth right. So it's Charles I had court appointed counsel. Junior had retain count for some very good ones and took his argument was look. I left the mob life. He denied any roles in any of these homicides that ledged during the build up to the case, and there wasn't charged with any homicides, but it came out a bow legged. He was, but he denied it.
And I think the jury Zack. I think I know that the jury, because of some of the jurors afterwards they thought this gathering. The government is using these witnesses against them all. However, on agendas or want to get something so You know what you say that not shading the truth here and one jurors are recall, said that you know it seems like a vendetta by the company, but there were picking on June foreigners trials now find the government had to say hey this. Is it that's what they thought were very good witnesses. Sure John a light and some others, it didn't work, you know you can have the best witness in the world, but the jury reads it differently and that's the interesting about the jury system. That's like something I never forget. As a reporter. You never know with juries on paper you going to
what you think is a very strong case, but you know you never know Well, you know there is a little bit to that argument when it is very rare to have four stabs at the same conviction here. That would allow for licensing apple yeah so they're pretty zealous in there and tried trying to have him connected butter, active! It's me I went after they thought. The last time was a charm before time. It wasn't today, well yeah right. I, despite a larger with especially in America, the lot of the universe. Medical machinery is tied to these things as well. So it's not just a Education and it's your quest word a conviction. It's also how you gonna look politically as well by the younger anybody with an aim gaudy.
Now is the target as a target for becoming a good high profile target. But you know we gotta move on. The other thing is to react, worry about sure, that's! What's going on Got terrorism got other kind of organized crime. You got a major drug situation in Mexico. In its way into his country You ve got financial crimes abolishing uncover the made off case for two years. So that thing that's been us better than education and the story. You know it's probably never, Philip the thing again, I hope not, but the you know we have other things to do, but we're still fascinated by these guys- and I don't know why I asked it is. Why am I what kind of interesting kind of romantic?
That's where I am? It is now romantic, it's kind of part of the spectacle reality shows now reality shows now removes a mafia, wife or something like TAT, while other bodies grown up bodies, but are another idea. I was a phone you out of wasn't naturally have available eyes, but source came out of it. Gaudy millionaire yeah. I know you have this thing about them. What sums programme women connected to the mafia is relatively minor. Reality show, I don't know I haven't seen it Bonanno related type people really crazy did you Graziano setting relatives are involved in one of his daughter releases and Semi Gravano, daughters and love found become a part of this. They accepted spectacle
sure in the media, but the stories, the good stories fascinate people. Yeah yeah, but, like you say it, it pales in comparison to what's going on in Mexico, and you know, let me know stories with wisdom would even shock. Organs. I think you know what I think. Poorly mafia attraction still remains, Is that a lot of these people are kind of just like us sure, The scene was a guy used to go to work. He had a wife and daughter is grandkids and live in my house. You know some of these. Other people are kind of likable In their own way, and someone serve at a politically ah yeah. I think that part of the attraction 'cause he seems to be like people like us. Next door neighbors.
Just sort of urban life, a lot of us don't take part, have my curiously at their stories of stories about making. On the specific accessible while you hit movies in his television series like Sopranos in the godfather things, haven't, haven't, hurt that either sort of putting in place, these are organised, I'm as well say an army tawny, Sopranos was a killer party, offer him a family life. A lot of people could related jobs going to college but found his foot, the third, a wife, you know who had grown issues and that will be criminals around him were doing all this crazy thing, and some of it is quite quite funny. Their lives caricatures, and this too far from become from reality.
He apparently not now puts Mr Watson, credit, Well, I wanted to thank you very much Tony for this. For this interview about king of the godfathers, the deadliest mafia dawn of the mall. And also talking about mob killer, will be looking forward to it in June, and hopefully will have you back on the program talking about that book as well. So I'm glad I'm glad it was fun doing this and you know hopefully listen is got something from some may now in the book is still available and mark killers of question and pre order, if you want to the usual for a man of honour would have what guitar and then I we'll go from there and we'll see how this goes, but it's been fun. Thank you very much for a greater degree of for those listening, even listening to Anthony these to follow king of the godfathers and his upcoming book mob killer.
Thank you very much have a good evening. Tony. Thank you. Thank you listen to to murder the most shocking killers in true crime, history and the others that have written about them. Good night, and now I thought from Geico Motorcycle. It took fifteen minutes to take a spirit, animal quiz online. Please be the cheetah. These be the cheetah and learn your animal, isn't the cheetah, but the far less appealing blood fish come on. To add insult to injury, you could have used those fifteen blood vision minutes to switch motorcycle insurance to Geico Geiger fifteen minutes could save you, fifteen percent or more on motorcycle insurance. Is your cell phone bill out of control than this? Is your wake up? Call the new tracks on wireless gives you unlimited talkin tech, starting at twenty dollars. A month, no contract plus unlimited carry over data with active service, be up the new track phone wireless. Now your in control see terms and conditions attract on dot com
Transcript generated on 2019-12-05.